Cubs star Anthony Rizzo cancer free for 8 years today

CHICAGO -- Chicago Cubs first baseman Anthony Rizzo announced on Twitter Friday that he has been cancer free for eight years.

"Eight years ago TODAY I was told I was in remission. I remember crying and hugging my family thinking how lucky we were," he wrote.

Back in 2008, Rizzo was playing Single A ball in Greenville, S.C., when he was diagnosed with Hodgkin's Lymphoma. He was only 18 years old. He went through six months of chemotherapy and it was especially difficult as his grandmother was battling breast cancer at the same time, his foundation website said.

The mission of the Anthony Rizzo Family Foundation is to raise money for cancer research and to provide support to children and their families battling the disease.

In addition to celebrating his cancer-free anniversary, Rizzo and Cubs Charities are going "gold" for Childhood Cancer Awareness Day at Wrigley Field.

"Cubs players and coaches will wear gold ribbon decals and wristbands, as well as participate in a special pregame activity alongside pediatric cancer patients and their families," the Cubs website said. "Cubs Charities will donate a portion of the game's 50/50 raffle proceeds to the Anthony Rizzo Family Foundation, Joe Maddon's Respect 90 Foundation and Jon Lester's NVRQT campaign, which support pediatric cancer research and programs."

"Today we are going gold to recognize those families who are battling cancer who will never receive the news my family did," Rizzo said on Twitter. "Only 4% of Cancer funding goes to pediatric cancer research. We must change this and make sure every kid has a fighting chance. #LetsGoGold"